Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Playing With Silk

Yesterday was the first Monday of the month, which means it was Anything Art day.  My art quilt bee met at Roberta Morgan's house, carrying bags of old silk neckties.  I encouraged my husband to rummage through his tie rack and give me his unloved, unworn, or worn-out silk ties.  Roberta pre-purchased some silk scarves from Dharma Trading, and I also brought a large remnant of silk that I scavenged at Mary Jo's Cloth Store.

The object of the game was to transfer the designs and colors from the silk ties on to silk scarves.  This project was in Quilting Arts Magazine, October/November 2010.

You don't need to wash or cut apart the ties, but we removed the tags from the back and cut off the triangular points at each end.

Roberta is a wiz at shopping the Goodwill thrift shops for great bargains.  She bought a sheet that we cut apart to use for muslin to wrap our projects in.  Her cat decided that SHE wanted the muslin sheet.  She's in there somewhere!


Cut the muslin into strips slightly longer and wider than your silk scarves.  Lay down the muslin and put the scarf on top.  Start cutting the neckties into lengths slightly wider than the width of the scarf and lay them down as desired over half the length of the scarf.  Double the scarf to cover the ties.  Begin to wrap the muslin and scarf from the open, unfolded end.  Wrap with twine or ribbon about every inch.  We used the curly gift-wrap ribbon.  (When doing this as a group project, use a different color ribbon to identify your bundle, or write your name with a permanent pen on the muslin cover.  It is sometimes difficult to identify your finished scarf!)

Put the bundles in an aluminum pot that you will not use again for cooking.  Cover with water and add three tablespoons of vinegar.  Bring to a rolling boil, and then simmer for twenty minutes. ( Please refer to the Quilting Arts article for precise instructions...I was not paying close attention to this part.)

While we were waiting for our bundled ties to process, Roberta showed us some of her silk scarves made with Sharpie markers and alcohol.  She also used some alcohol-based inks.

Then, we all got some of my silk piece or another silk scarf, and decorated with Sharpie markers.  Roberta had distilled alcohol in a fine mister, which we used to spray after coloring/doodling our silk.

Toni did a rather open design with lots of white background.

I used a piece of silk and did some very loose floral, leafy, and swirly designs. 

This is my piece of silk after a little bit of alcohol spray.

I kept adding a little more marker and respraying, folding it on itself to blend.  Here is how it turned out.  I love it!

A side benefit of using the muslin sheet as a "drop cloth" is a cool piece of colorful fabric.

I had time for one more small piece of Sharpie-colored silk before the tie-printed scarves were done.  I was starting to think of Valentine fabric postcards. 

Finally it was time to reveal our printed scarves.  We started unwrapping the fabric bundles.

Look what happened!  Here is Ruth-Ellen's scarf.

This one is Kathy's.

Mine came out much more light in value.  I may add some additional color with alcohol inks or silk paint.  The white areas are from a white tie with tiny black polka dots.  The dots did not print very well.

You never know what the colors will look like on the finished product.  Some of the ties came out with vibrant maroons and greens.  Tama did a little design work when laying out her ties, and had a great result.

You can actually re-use the same silk ties for another go.  Here are the ones we used, laid out to dry.

You can also use the triangular tips that you cut off to make I-Pod covers or other fabric creations.

For show-and-tell, we got to see many of Roberta's Zentangled creations.  She is doing a workshop for the local branch of the American Sewing Guild, and has been Zentangling everything that doesn't move.  She found these white canvas open-backed sneakers at the Goodwill, and got the snazzy shoelaces from a friend that didn't want them.

She Zentangled  an Ikea mirror from the Goodwill, picture frames, and much much more.

Here is a beaded, Zentangled art quilt.

Here is a detail which shows the beading.

After the meeting, many of us went to the newly re-located Whistle Stop Quilt Shop in Cary, NC.  I will blog about that in a later post.

Roberta's home is only a mile from my son's, so I took Roo home yesterday.  His parents were returning from Florida that afternoon.  We will miss him!  He is a ball of energy and a friendly little dog.

My dog, Kasey, did not like it one bit when I left her home and took off in the car with Roo.  When I got home, she was frantic.  She looked all over for Roo, sniffed the car, and couldn't figure out where he went. 

She is back to being an "only child." 


Carol G said...

Wow, the silk necktie transfer to create new fabric is a unique and fun idea. Thanks for the illustrated story!

Unknown said...

oh Kasey is so sweet

Nik said...

I LOVE reading craft blogs because I always learn new things. I loved reading about the tie/scarf project. I would never have thought that something like that was possible.

Katie said...

Wow. I think I have to find me some sneakers to Zentangle! :-)

Unknown said...

I love the tie transfer idea...the fabric is beautiful and those tennis shoes rock!!!

Unknown said...

The silk tie transfer to silk fabric, is there a technical word for this type of art? Technique?

The Gardener said...

What sort of silk did you use? Do you buy it as raw silk fabric and cut it yourself? You look like you have fun. The scarves are beautiful